The celebration of Pride Month has been highly visible in our daily lives. Many stores and restaurants have put up rainbow flags to show love and support to the LGBTQ+ community. This spirit even extends to virtual games like Injustice 2 Mobile, which aims to raise awareness by featuring queer Global Challenge events.
However, their good intentions didn’t come off as they had hoped.
The game’s first celebration of Pride Month is a free gift with a chance of unlocking Batwoman (who, in the comics, is often portrayed as a lesbian). Simple and unproblematic. Yet, the second event, the Poison Ivy challenge, gets severely criticized and “canceled” by some players, especially LGBTQ+ members.
The Poison Ivy Challenge asks players to beat up Poison Ivy, a quintessential bisexual character that has been officially confirmed by the DC universe. In one of Injustice 2 Mobile’s latest tweets, they praised how many times our queer character has been “taken down” and encouraged players to “defeat Poison Ivy 225,000 more times to unlock the first reward tier,” with a lovely Pride flag hashtag following.
The irony is painfully obvious; repeatedly beating up an LGBTQ+ character to celebrate Pride Month caused a backlash against this event. In response to the criticism, Injustice 2 Mobile not only changed its profile to one with a rainbow background, but also issued an apology via Twitter.
— Injustice 2 Mobile (@Injustice2Go) June 4, 2021
“We recognize associating our latest Global Challenge with Pride was insensitive and inappropriate. Real life violence against the LGBTQIA+ community and women within that community in particular is all too common and we should actively engage in efforts to end LGBTQIA+ violence, not normalize it. We apologize to the greater community, but especially LGBTQIA+ members. We are committed to listening and doing better,” the tweet said.
That being said, the comment section is not filled with appreciation as expected. As one of the gamers said, “Social media Cancel Culture strikes again. There wasn’t anything bad about the challenge and It wasn’t promoting violence against ANYONE but videogame characters.” He believes that a game simply “shouldn’t be associated with real life.”
Others, who do consider the Poison Ivy Challenge inappropriate, stated that devising and approving this event to be featured in Pride Month prove that “there was 0 LGBTQ+ people on staff.”
Although the Challenge is currently removed, Injustice 2 Mobile confirmed that the rewards earned from this Challenge will not be removed from your profile and will still be sent after it is complete. No time and refreshes will be wasted.